Police happy with well behaved New Year's Eve celebrations

Sensible partying across New Zealand resulted in low arrest numbers on Saturday night and early Sunday morning.

The traditional Mount Maunganui beach party was cancelled this year by Tauranga City Council, after the risk and the cost had been rising each year.

The average age of the crowd had grown younger and sexual assaults increased, so the council pulled the plug.

This year the beach was virtually empty - lit by floodlights to make the shore more secure.

Police made a record low 15 arrests - a third of the total from the same night last year and a far cry from riots in 2001 that saw more than 100 arrests and 80 injuries.

Across the harbour in Tauranga, police made just 12 arrests.

Auckland's Sky Tower put on a spectacular fireworks display to welcome in 2017.

Police say the celebrations in Auckland were standard, with no big flare ups being reported.

Wellington had not one but two fireworks displays, with a special 9pm countdown for children before the main event at midnight.

Along the capital's waterfront, 6000 people gathered to say hello to 2017 - twice.

On Courtenay Place, some bars remained cordoned off after November's earthquake. That made events like the one on the waterfront all the more successful.

Wellington's biggest problem was liquor ban breaches, with police making eight arrests across the district in what they describe as a moderately busy Saturday night.

Further south, a number of intoxicated youths - some as young as 13 - had police concerned in Wanaka.

A crowd of around 10,000 revellers welcomed in the New Year beside Queenstown's waterfront, but only 9 arrests were made.

There was a strong police presence around Otago with 50 extra staff on duty, and 18 people arrested in Dunedin overnight.

At the Rhythm and Alps music festival, 7000 youths partied through the night, with only one arrest - unlike Rhythm and Vines in Gisborne, which saw eight arrested in a drug bust.

Police say on the whole, crowds in the South Island were largely well behaved.